SALEM A Salem homeowner pulled a gun on an intruder Saturday morning and held him until officers arrived, police said.

Just after 6 a.m., Dan Strasser awoke to find an intruder in his home trying to make off with a laptop, so he yelled at his girlfriend to bring him his gun.

I figured a skunk or squirrel got into the house because I have a door that I keep cracked for her to go in and out of, Strasser said, talking about his dog.

The suspect, later identified as 25-year-old Thomas Lowell, then ran into the garage where Strasser cornered him.

Lowell then pulled out a knife and threatened Strasser but dropped it once he saw the gun, police said.

This sounds weird. I was thankful to have a gun because what that did is make sure nobody got hurt. I don t know what he would do. I m a fairly old guy so he could have thought I can get through you, but he decided not to do that when I had a weapon, he said.

Strasser's deaf 3-year-old Springer Spaniel Bonnie then sat on Lowell until police arrived. Police said Lowell thought the dog was a police dog and was too scared to move.

Arriving officers found Lowell on the ground and arrested him without incident. He was charged with burglary, criminal mischief, unlawful possession of methamphetamine and parole violation.


KGW reporter Wayne Havrelly contributed to this report.

Read or Share this story: